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Genes Dev May 1, 1994; 8 (9): 1106-16.
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Nuclear polyadenylation factors recognize cytoplasmic polyadenylation elements.

Bilger A , Fox CA , Wahle E , Wickens M .

In the cytoplasm of oocytes and early embryos, addition of poly(A) to mRNAs can activate their translation. We demonstrate that despite many differences between poly(A) addition in the cytoplasm and nucleus, these two forms of polyadenylation may involve identical trans-acting factors. Nuclear polyadenylation requires the sequence AAUAAA, the AAUAAA-binding cleavage and polyadenylation specificity factor (CPSF), and a poly(A) polymerase (PAP). We show that CPSF and PAP, purified from calf thymus, exhibit the same sequence specificity observed in the cytoplasm during frog oocyte maturation, requiring both AAUAAA and a proximal U-rich sequence. The enhanced polyadenylation of RNAs containing U-rich sequences is caused by their increased affinity for CPSF. Frog nuclear polyadenylation factors display cytoplasmic sequence specificity when dilute, suggesting that a difference in their concentrations in the nucleus and cytoplasm underlies the different sequence specificities in the two compartments. Because polyadenylation in extracts prepared from oocytes before maturation is stimulated by addition of CPSF, the onset of polyadenylation during early development may be attributable to the activation or synthesis of a CPSF-like factor. We suggest that sequences upstream of AAUAAA that are required for cleavage and polyadenylation of certain pre-mRNAs in the nucleus may be functionally equivalent to the upstream, U-rich sequences that function in the cytoplasm, enhancing CPSF binding. We propose that CPSF and PAP comprise a core polyadenylation apparatus in the cytoplasm of oocytes and early embryos.

PubMed ID: 7926790
Article link: Genes Dev
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